In October of 2014, it was confirmed that LSU and Miami would open the 2018 college football season against each other. Nearly three years later, we have a date and time to go along with it.
It was announced Tuesday that the Tigers and Hurricanes will meet Sunday, Sept. 2, of next year at AT&T Stadium in Arlington, Texas, with kickoff set for 7:30 p.m. ET. It was originally scheduled to be played the day before.
That matchup will be broadcast on ABC.
The opener will mark just the 12th meeting ever between the football programs, and the first since 2013. This will also serve as the third-ever regular-season meeting between the ACC and SEC squads, with the last one coming way back in 1988.
The Tigers will be playing just their second game ever on a Sunday. They last did so in 2002 against Virginia Tech in Blacksburg.
I don’t even know if bubble-wrapping Maryland quarterbacks would help at this point.
This past Saturday afternoon, Kasim Hill went down with what appeared to be a very serious-looking injury to his right leg in the first quarter of the loss to UCF. Three days later, it was confirmed that the true freshman has been diagnosed with a torn ACL and will miss the remainder of the 2017 season.
Hill is the second Terrapins quarterback to suffer such a fate the first four weeks of the season. In the second half of Maryland’s season-opening 51-41 upset of Texas, Tyrrell Pigrome went down with what was later diagnosed as a torn ACL, ending his 2017 season as well.
Unfortunately for the Terps, the injuries, ACLs in particular, haven’t been limited to just those two of late.
Hill will be replaced in the starting lineup by No. 3 quarterback Max Bortenschlager, who started one game last season for the Terps. After replacing Hill, Bortenschlager completed 15-of-26 passes for 132 yards, one touchdown and two interceptions in the 38-10 loss to the Knights. Prior to that, he had attempted just two passes this season, completing one of them for four yards.
As was the case a few years ago, Maryland might want to consider bubble-wrapping their quarterbacks.
In the second half of Maryland’s season-opening 51-41 upset of Texas Saturday, Tyrrell Pigrome went down with what was later diagnosed as a torn ACL, ending his 2017 season. Quarterback No. 2, Kasim Hill, took over for the starter and guided the Terrapins to an easy 46-point win over FCS Towson the following weekend.
Coming off a bye, Hill started the Week 4 game against UCF, and promptly went down with what looked to be a very serious-looking injury to his right leg. Hill put no weight on the leg as he left the field with assistance from the team’s training staff, and was ultimately taken via cart into the locker room for further evaluation.
The true freshman has been ruled out of returning to the non-conference contest.
Hill was replaced by No. 3 quarterback Max Bortenschlager, who started one game last season for the Terps. Trailing the Knights 21-10 late in the third quarter, Bortenschlager has completed 9-of-16 passes for 83 yards, one touchdown and one interception in relief.
The middle of September isn’t typically the time that bowl arrangements are tweaked but that doesn’t mean they can’t happen.
Conference USA confirmed details of a bowl tie-in “swap” with the Big Ten on Wednesday, causing a bit of a Texas two-step in the postseason picture for both leagues in the Dallas/Fort Worth metroplex. The move on the Big Ten’s end was originally announced back in May but it appears the CUSA end is just now being confirmed officially.
As a result:
- A Conference USA team will now play in the Armed Forces Bowl. They’ll play against Army if the Black Knights are eligible,
- The Big Ten will place a team in Heart of Dallas Bowl against vs. a Big 12 opponent
While the exact reason for the swap is unclear, it certainly makes a little more sense for a Big Ten team to be in Dallas against a fellow Power Five conference like the Big 12. In addition, the Big Ten has not had a team filled a slot in the Heart of Dallas Bowl since 2014 and have actually never scored a victory in the game either.
There was supposed to be a B1G squad in the bowl last season but, because of shortages elsewhere in terms of eligible teams, the game wound up being an Army win over an eventual 5-8 North Texas squad. Conference USA apparently remains contractually tied to the Heart of Dallas Bowl until 2019, just not this year.
The Lockheed Martin Armed Forces Bowl is scheduled for Saturday, Dec. 23 in Fort Worth while the Zaxby’s Heart of Dallas Bowl is slated to be played on Tuesday, Dec. 26.
We don’t even know yet how the 2017 season will shake out, but we can already pencil in how we think the 2020-21 Big Ten seasons will play out.
The conference released its league schedule for both seasons, which can be found here and here. And while it’s useless to break down the relative strengths and weaknesses of a season three and four years in the future, these schedules are notable in one way:
The Big Ten is going all-in on the opening weekend.
Following the success of this year’s Ohio State at Indiana opener, the Big Ten has stacked more games to be played on Labor Day weekend. The 2020 season will feature Northwestern at Michigan State, Purdue at Nebraska and Indiana at Wisconsin on Sept. 5.
The 2021 season will open with Michigan State at Northwestern, Ohio State at Minnesota, Indiana at Iowa and Penn State at Wisconsin on Sept. 4.
All games are scheduled for Saturday for now; TV will make its Thursday and Friday designations (of which there will be a few) as the games actually approach. Three and four years from now.